2007 radio replacement

Nongmin

Member
30
3
8
Charlotte, NC
In my first post, I referenced the fact that, while the six disc/subwoofer/nine speaker Soundmark unit in my car did a good job of providing music, it doesn't have the modern USB or aux inputs on the unit. No Bluetooth, either. With this in mind, I may have to give up the factory look to get these features. Youngoldman provided a picture of his Pioneer unit and it looks good. What is stopping me is, when I searched on the Crutchfield site, they mention that I would need to run new wiring to all the speakers. Something about the amp being in the trunk? I'm trying to understand the logic behind this, because the idea of a big rewiring job, especially to each door, doesn't necessarily appeal to me at this point. And I hope to avoid a major hack job on the existing wiring. I've done radio replacement before and it's not that difficult, but replacing existing wiring with new speaker wiring has me scratching my head. Advice from anyone who has tackled this same radio setup would be greatly appreciated, of course.
 

Town

Senior Member
4,359
112
63
Ottawa Ontario Canada
I don't know much about radios.

Seems the model of Pioneer is not suited to your car. There must be more models from Pioneer that will work with the stock wiring. If not there are lots of "radios" that will do the job you want without problems. There have been many examples of Town Cars here with nice display screens and all the functionality of the latest cars.

Take a look at this article in our Tech forum here: 2007 TC Radio replacement Write Up that should help you out.
 

Nongmin

Member
30
3
8
Charlotte, NC
I agree, the head unit is a head unit. Everything feeds through it and the peripherals are controlled through the head unit. Thanks for the tech reference, I'll check it. Then, I may call Crutchfield and have them explain to me why the wiring has to be redone. Something close to plug and play is what I'm looking for and I'm pretty sure it exists. (y)
 

YoungOldMan

Member
43
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8
I don't have the premium sound package in my TC, so it was very plug and play for me. I'm curious about why the premium sound means all new wiring.
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Nongmin

Member
30
3
8
Charlotte, NC
When you replied earlier, I was wondering if you had a premium radio beforehand. Thanks for the update.

We're going to find out why the need for a rewiring, seems unnecessary to me, and I'll post when I get an answer.
 

Nongmin

Member
30
3
8
Charlotte, NC
Ahhh.... just read the Tech reference Town provided, The amp needs 5V as opposed to 12V and I just happen to have some of these step down transformers in my parts collection. If this is the case, then it's a non-issue! Thanks, gentlemen. This will be fun!
 

Nongmin

Member
30
3
8
Charlotte, NC
Finally had time to call Crutchfield and ask for an explanation to the statement that new speaker wire would have to be added. They said the factory amp is looking for the 5V signal and did not have any comment on the tech article that Town referenced in an earlier post. They did say the tech info sounded plausible but had no experience in performing this sort of installation. Apparently, there are several work-arounds that allow us to install a system of our liking that will bring all the modern conveniences of today into the LTC.

I'll probably swap out the factory unit for a touchscreen model with Apple Carplay, but I haven't made the decision which manufacturer I'll go with. Once I do, I'll post again.
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wolf_walker

Junior Member
57
6
8
FWIW, I added one of these, for about half the retail price off ebay, to my 04's factory Nav system.
INSTALL KIT FOR HANDS-FREE CALLING AND MUSIC STREAMING THROUGH YOUR CAR RADIO

I really liked the factory unit's look and to my ageing ears it sounds good enough that I can wait till
something breaks to mess with it, but bluetooth or an aux input was required.
I've been overall very pleased with the isimple unit, it's not perfect, but it does
what it does well. They have a couple other models with hardwire connections and such, I'm a heavy
android user and Android Auto on a big phone with voice control is pretty nice. It would be nicer still to have
a modern capacitive touch screen nav unit with either apple or android integrated, but it's a lot of money for
a nice one, and a lot of work. Crutchfield was a bit mystified at my 04 nav setup, the later cars are likely better
supported.
 

Nongmin

Member
30
3
8
Charlotte, NC

wolf_walker

Junior Member
57
6
8
Those little adaptors like that work amazingly well compared to decades ago trying to feed a CD player through an FM modulator.
I like that isimple box since it's seamless and hidden and has an external mic. The sound quality is limited to what FM can manage,
but it's generally pretty ok. Bluetooth itself is a little short on fidelity even with some of the newer protocols if both ends of one's hardware happens to support it. But it's clean and convenient.
 

autoseals

Junior Member
34
9
8
When you replied earlier, I was wondering if you had a premium radio beforehand. Thanks for the update.

We're going to find out why the need for a rewiring, seems unnecessary to me, and I'll post when I get an answer.
I just finished replacing my head unit and speakers on my 2007. I did not have to run new wires to the four speakers like crutchfield mentioned in their article. I did a full write up in the tech area. let know if you have any questions.
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wolf_walker

Junior Member
57
6
8
Crutchfield and other more audio-inclined types will tend to suggest you bypass the factory amps, which does require new wiring to do it at all right.
Reason being a quality modern aftermarket head unit likely has more and cleaner power than a decades old built to a cost point factory amp.
They are usually right. That being said, I've been quite happy (granted I'm old now) with the factory amp as long as the speakers are in good order.
I replaced the headunit in my 90 with a JBL factory system, and after replacing the woofer in the trunk enclosure it sounds quite good for what it is.
 

autoseals

Junior Member
34
9
8
Crutchfield and other more audio-inclined types will tend to suggest you bypass the factory amps, which does require new wiring to do it at all right.
Reason being a quality modern aftermarket head unit likely has more and cleaner power than a decades old built to a cost point factory amp.
They are usually right. That being said, I've been quite happy (granted I'm old now) with the factory amp as long as the speakers are in good order.
I replaced the headunit in my 90 with a JBL factory system, and after replacing the woofer in the trunk enclosure it sounds quite good for what it is.
In my 2007, the factory amp was only being used for the sub woofer. With an updated headunit and new speakers it sounds great. I didn't want to have the hassle of installing a new amp and running wires to each speaker.
 

wolf_walker

Junior Member
57
6
8
Interesting, if that is the case the wiring to the speakers should be fine. Really odd for it to be that way though.
Most of them, the factory amp takes a low level from the head unit and runs a basic crossover for lows to the woofer
and the rest to the other speakers. Crutchfield was pretty baffled with the factory nav in my 04, they said and I quote
"wow, that's rare" lol. The 05 till whenever they discontinued it the the "THX" nav setup seems to be more well known.
I'll have to cross that bridge one day.

They do, for some factory amp'd cars, have a bypass harness, I think my 90 with the factory JBL setup has one available.
It's less than ideal, but it works and is quick and easy. I have in the past on other cars replaced factory amps, using the factory
wiring, with more modern amps with good results. There used to be a couple of high quality 4+1 channel amps that were good for
such but it's been years ago that I did such.
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baylensman

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